I honestly don’t remember what happened at the FIL (International Book Fair) 2014, I suppose I attended, but there are no pictures of it so I’m not sure. In any case, the following year at FIL 2015 was perhaps for me one of the best book fairs I have attended. That was the year of the autographs everywhere, I meet my favorite authors and face my fear of speaking in public (which did not go very well).
And to clarify all this it may be necessary to return a little earlier that year, in November the Editorial SM launched a contest to present the author Maggie Stiefvater, writer of sagas as The Wolves of Mercy Falls and The Raven Cycle (saga of books that is definitely one of my favorites). So at the opportunity to meet with the author of these books I recorded my first video blog.
Here is the video:
For my luck and surprise, I won the contest and officially I was selected to present one of my favorite authors in the FIL. Anyone who is a fan of a book saga understands that knowing the author is an indescribable experience. The dream of a lifetime, that many can never fulfill.
So when the FIL started, I would jump all over the place with my books ready for autographs.
The first day of the FIL, Maggie Stiefvater would be at SM’s stand (for a brief moment) so I approached to her so she could autograph one of her books. It was a brief moment since there was a large line and it was just a taste of what was to come.
The next day was the presentation, Maggie would have a conference in one of the FIL rooms and before entering I would present it to the entire audience. I must admit that my emotion focused on knowing the author and not on making the presentation. Backstage talk to the writer and then a member of staff asks “Are you ready?”, Well, of course saying a short introductory speech does not seem to be the big deal but when you have no idea what you’re going to say and you have a Light scenic fear that is summed up in your worst nightmare. But at that moment there was nothing I could do, so I went on stage, taking care of each one of my steps so as not to stumble and with many repetitions, nervousness and trembling, I gave a hardly respectable introduction, although all I wanted was to finish and disappear among the public.
Here you can see the video of the conference
(NOTE: although I asked my friends to record it, it took me 3 years to see the video because it cost me a lot to relive the humiliation).
By the way, Maggie Stiefvater is an amazing person, with so many books in the Best Sellers maybe she could give herself airs of greatness. But is the opposite is a kind, modest and friendly person. It helped me a lot to overcome my nerves and made me proud to call her my favorite author.
After the conference the official book signing took place and with my friends we brought our books to sign. What ended an incredible day that would be recorded in my memory forever.
That same year came more bestselling authors like Becca Fitzpatrick writer of Hush, Hush (saga that is now in production to adapt the film) and Elizabeth Eulberg among others. Whose books I had read in high school. It was amazing how after so much time I was finally able to meet them face to face and get an autograph. For those who read and are from somewhere outside of Latin America I ask you to understand, American or European authors rarely come to other countries, it’s not like when they write a new book and go in a tour to almost every state where fans may have to travel 1 or 2 hours on the road if they want to meet them. In Latin America if we are lucky your author will make one visit, so you have to travel perhaps from the other side of the country (probably without a lot of funds) on trips longer than 12 hours of bus to manage to say “Hello” to your favorite author. And of course, that is if they ever come to your country, otherwise only if you have sufficient means to travel to another country you can perhaps make that journey and statistically not many people can afford that luxury. So to be able to say that in the same week I met 3 international authors is a kind of legendary.
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